Designing unconventional peptide modifications to universally enhance CD4+ T-cell activation 


  • Prof Andrew Godkin

    Cardiff University

  • Prof Wendy Barclay

    Imperial College London

  • Prof Awen Gallimore

    Cardiff University

  • Prof Ian Jones

    University of Reading

  • Prof Gavin Wilkinson

    Cardiff University

  • Dr David Cole

    Cardiff University

Project summary

White blood cells called T-cells are crucial for generating an immune response to fight infection and cancer. T-cells need to physically bind to small proteins released from cancer cells or other infected cells in our bodies with enough force to ensure an adequate immune response. If the T-cell binding is too weak, the immune response is inadequate and we succumb to disease.

We have identified a method of making T-cells far more sticky to these proteins, without losing their ability to distinguish foreign proteins that can cause infections from the proteins that our bodies usually make day-to-day. We will generate a range of sticky proteins and test them in different vaccines to measure how effectively we can treat infections and cancer.

These results will open the door to a new generation of treatments for infections and cancer.